Subdivision development now centered

Five years after public opposition shut it down, a planned subdivision between Porter Creek and Yukon College is back on the table.

Five years after public opposition shut it down, a planned subdivision between Porter Creek and Yukon College is back on the table.

Called Porter Creek D, the development generally looks like a 400-unit residential community, parallel to McIntyre Creek, tucked in between Mountainview Drive and the Alaska Highway.

Concerns about wildlife and recreation in the area killed the proposal in 2005.

Today, environmental concerns will make the project fly, said Mike Gau, Whitehorse’s manager of planning and development services.

“In some ways, we have the same values,” he said.

The city doesn’t want to destroy more wild land, so it has decided to develop in the city.

The proposed site for Porter Creek D is only about three kilometres from the geographical city centre, he said.

The exact centre of Whitehorse is atop Two Mile Hill.

The idea is to keep our urban development contained, said Gau, for the sake of environmental protection.

“Our philosophy is that the bigger environmental gain is by protecting the larger, undisturbed areas and keeping the disturbed areas contained,” he said. “The area’s largely impacted right now by humans, through recreation, through past roads. There’s a water pipeline running through the area already, there are power lines. A lot of the infrastructure is nearby or even in place.”

The municipal and territorial governments have just approved an agreement to start planning the project.

But that doesn’t mean the subdivision will be built, Gau said.

Everything that was done in 2005 will need to be reviewed and revised, he said.

Consultation will be conducted by the firm planning the project, he added.

It’s important to do this right, said Coun. Ranj Pillai, noting groups like the Yukon Conservation Society should be included.

Contact Roxanne Stasyszyn at

roxannes@yukon-news.com